Cesar Lanuza Appointed as CEO of Lawson Products Operating Company
Lawson Products, Inc. (NASDAQ: LAWS) (“Lawson Products”, “Lawson” or the “Company"), a best-in-class, specialty distribution holding company, today announced the appointment of Cesar Lanuza as President and Chief Executive Officer of Lawson’s operating company, and the retirement of President and Chief Executive Officer, Michael G. DeCata, effective April 4, 2022, as part of an ongoing succession plan. Mr. DeCata will transition his role through May 1, 2022, when he will also retire from his remaining positions, including as a member of Lawson’s Board of Directors and will then assume a role providing advisory services to Lawson’s board as part of a four-year agreement.
J. Bryan King, Chairman of Lawson Products, commented, “As part of our continued succession planning and search process, we are very excited to welcome Cesar Lanuza as the new President and CEO of the Lawson Products operating company. Cesar’s high energy, industry expertise, and successful track record, coupled with his customer-centric leadership style, are well-suited to take Lawson to the next level of growth and profitability. He is an excellent fit with our vision and direction following the completion of our strategic combination announced late last week.”
“I am thrilled to be joining Lawson at such an exciting time for the Company and our customers,” said Mr. Lanuza. “Lawson Products is a world-class organization with strong and engaged teams, and my goal is to push the vision forward to further accelerate revenue growth and profitability. I am confident that we will continue to evolve our products, services, and capabilities to better service our customers. We have a strategic growth plan for Lawson through both organic and inorganic strategies and have a clear focus on end markets with longer-term secular growth. The strategic combination of Lawson, TestEquity and Gexpro Services opens new opportunities to increase wallet share through cross-selling, leveraging best-in-class services and expanding our digital capabilities across the platform. The future has never been brighter for Lawson Products.”
Mr. King continued, “On behalf of the Board, management team and Lawson employees, I want to thank Mike for his significant contributions that have led to the success and growth of Lawson for the last decade. During his tenure, Mike has been a steadfast leader and his commitment to operating excellence has been instrumental in the Company’s evolution and value creation for our shareholders.”
Mr. DeCata, said, “I want to sincerely thank the Lawson Board of Directors for their confidence in me, and I would also like to thank and recognize the dedicated Lawson employees for their hard work and commitment during my tenure at Lawson. It has been an honor to serve as President and CEO during this important period of transformation and growth for the Company. As an ongoing Lawson shareholder, I am highly confident in Lawson’s ability to grow and create long-term value under Cesar’s leadership. I look forward to my new role as an advisor to the Board and especially looking forward to spending more time with my family.”
Mr. Cesar Lanuza Biography:
Mr. Lanuza brings a combined 30 years of global experience and is a multi-cultural and bi-lingual leader, who most recently served as Chief Executive Officer and Director at Jon-Don, LLC. Prior to this position, he served as President for North America and Asia Pacific at Optimas OE Solutions, LLC and previously as Vice President/General Manager at W.W. Grainger, Inc. where he also served in various senior-level positions for more than 10 years, located in North America and South America. Lanuza has also held multiple cross-functional roles at General Electric-Healthcare and United Technologies. He earned an engineering degree from Universidad Internacional de las Americas in San Jose, Costa Rica and an MBA from INCAE Business School. Cesar resides in the Chicago area with his wife, and he has two sons.
About Lawson Products, Inc.
Founded in 1952, Lawson Products, Inc., headquartered in Chicago, IL, sells and distributes specialty products to the industrial, commercial, institutional and government maintenance, repair and operations market. Lawson is dedicated to helping customers in the U.S. and Canada lower their total cost of operation by increasing productivity and efficiency. The combination of Lawson and Partsmaster’s Vendor Managed Inventory process and the company’s problem-solving professionals ensures customers always have the right parts to handle the job. Through The Bolt Supply House, customers in Western Canada have access to products at several branch locations. Under its Kent Automotive brand, Lawson provides collision and mechanical repair products to the automotive aftermarket. Lawson ships from several strategically located distribution centers to customers in all 50 states, Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean.
TestEquity® is a leading distributor focused on providing the largest and highest quality selection of test and measurement equipment and solutions, electronic production supplies, and tool kits from its leading manufacturer partners supporting the technology, aerospace, defense, automotive, electronics, education, and medical industries. TestEquity also designs a full line of the industry’s highest-quality environmental test chambers. Serving electronic design and test engineers as well as maintenance technicians, industrial manufacturing assembly, and the telecommunication repair community, TestEquity features more than 80,000 products from over 1,000 manufacturer brands. TestEquity continues to benefit from ubiquitous electronification of all types of products across most industries including IOT, EV, and 5G.
About Gexpro Services
Gexpro Services is a world-class global supply chain solutions provider, specializing in the development of mission critical production line management, aftermarket and field installation programs. Gexpro Services provides comprehensive supply chain management solutions, including a full technology suite offering of vendor managed inventory, kitting, global logistics management, manufacturing localization and import expertise, value engineering and quality assurance. Gexpro Services’ end-to-end project management is designed to support manufacturing OEMs with their engineered material specifications, fulfillment, and quality requirements to improve their total cost of ownership. Headquartered in Irving, TX, Gexpro Services has manufacturing and supply chain operations in over 30 Service Center sites across nine countries including key geographies in Europe, Asia, North America, South America, and the Middle East. Gexpro Services serves customers in six vertical markets, including Renewables, Industrial Power, Consumer and Industrial, Technology, Transportation, and Aerospace and Defense.
Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-Looking Statements
This Press Release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, that involve risks and uncertainties. The terms “aim,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “contemplates,” “continues,” “could,” “ensure,” “estimate,” “expect,” “forecasts,” “if,” “intend,” “likely,” “may,” “might,” “objective,” “outlook,” “plan,” “positioned,” “potential,” “predict,” “probable,” “project,” “shall,” “should,” “strategy,” “will,” “would,” and other words and terms of similar meaning and expression are intended to identify forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements can also be identified by the fact that they do not relate strictly to historical or current facts. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and involve inherent risks, uncertainties and assumptions, including factors that could delay, divert or change any of them, and could cause actual outcomes to differ materially from current expectations. Lawson can give no assurance that any goal or plan set forth in forward-looking statements can be achieved and Lawson cautions readers not to place undue reliance on such statements, which speak only as of the date made. Lawson undertakes no obligation to release publicly any revisions to forward-looking statements as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. Actual results may differ materially from those projected as a result of certain risks and uncertainties. Certain risks associated with Lawson’s business are also discussed from time to time in the reports Lawson files with the SEC, including Lawson’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021, Lawson’s Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Lawson’s Current Reports on Form 8-K. In addition, the following factors, among others, could cause actual outcomes and results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements: (i) whether or not the terms of the earnout provisions in either of the merger agreements will be satisfied such that Lawson would be required to issue additional shares of Lawson common stock in connection with the mergers; (ii) unanticipated difficulties or expenditures relating to the mergers; (iii) the risk that stockholder litigation in connection with the mergers results in significant costs of defense, indemnification and liability; and (iv) any problems arising in combining the businesses of Lawson, TestEquity and Gexpro Services, which may result in the combined company not operating as effectively and efficiently as expected.
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